The Norrsken Foundation has launched Norrsken22 Africa Tech Growth Fund, which has held its first close at $110 million. The fund is dedicated to delivering top quartile returns, and will drive strong, positive impact across Africa.
The Norrsken Foundation, which was formed by Niklas Adalberth, a co-founder of Klarna, has teamed with investment firms from across Africa, including Actis in South Africa and Acuity Venture Partners in Nigeria, to spearhead the fund’s investment strategy.
The fund, which aims to raise $200 million in total commitments, is backed by 30 unicorn founders who have contributed their expertise as well as $65 million in funding.
Among them are Olugbenga Agboola, co-founder Flutterwave, Niklas Zennström, co-founder Skype, Jacob de Geer, co-founder iZettle, Niklas Östberg, co-founder Delivery Hero, Carl Manneh, co-founder Mojang, Sebastian Knutsson, co-founder King and Willard Ahdritz, founder Kobalt Music.
The fund is also funded by the SEB Pension Foundation and family offices, all of whom share Norrsken22’s vision of scalable entrepreneurship as a driver of long-term and sustainable economic growth in Africa.
Norrsken22 will make 20 investments with an average ticket size of $10 million and a maximum ticket size of $16 million, including follow-on rounds in several of its portfolio firms. Fintech, edtech, medtech, and market-enabling solutions like B2B marketplaces and inventory management businesses are among its focus industries.
It also intends to invest 40% of its capital, or $80 million, in Series A and B companies, with the rest in follow-on rounds from Series C up until exit.
Nonkululeko Nyembezi, Chairman Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), Arnold Ekpe, ex-Group Chief Executive, Ecobank, Phuthuma Nhleko, ex-Chief Executive, MTN, and Shingai Mutasa, Founder and CEO, Masawara Plc are among the fund’s advisory council members, who contribute local business knowledge as well as global perspectives.
“Africa has a population of 1.2 billion, where 60 per cent are below 25 years old. In the next decade, this young, digital-first generation will change not only the future of Africa but of the world,” said Niklas Adalberth, founder of Norrsken Foundation.
“Eyes are turning towards Africa as the next epicentre for digital disruption. Technology is enabling emerging enterprises to leapfrog legacy ways of doing business. Leaders are emerging but a lack of growth capital is holding them back,” said Hans Otterling, Norrsken22 founding partner.